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Primulina guizhongensis (Gesneriaceae), a new species from Guangxi, China

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A new species of Primulina is described and illustrated from southern China (Guangxi zhuang Autonomous Region) as P. guizhongensis. This new species is similar to P. spadiciformis based on morphological characters. Sequences of nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region and the plastid trnL-F intronspacer (trnL-F) from the new species and its 22 relatives are used to resolve generic placement of the new species in Primulina. In spite of three species are vastly different in morphology, the molecular evidences showed that the closest relatives of P. guizhongensis are P. mollifolia and P. luochengensis. The conservation threat analysis is summarized according to the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria.
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Accepted by Maarten Christenhusz: 15 Mar. 2013; published online in PDF: 10 June 2013 27
PHYTOTAXA
ISSN 1179-3155 (print edition)
ISSN 1179-3163 (online edition)
Copyright © 2013 Magnolia Press
Phytotaxa 109 (1): 27–35 (2013)
www.mapress.com/phytotaxa/Article
http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/phytotaxa.109.1.3
Primulina guizhongensis (Gesneriaceae), a new species from Guangxi, China
BO ZHAO1, BO PAN1, YANG ZHANG2 & FANG WEN1*
1Herbarium, Guangxi Institute of Botany, No. 85, Yanshan Town, Guilin, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, CN-541006, China
2Senhe Seed Co. Ltd. Hangzhou, CN-314200, China
*Author for correspondence (wenfang760608@139.com)
Abstract
A new species of Primulina is described and illustrated from southern China (Guangxi zhuang Autonomous Region) as
P. guizhongensis. This new species is similar to P. spadiciformis based on morphological characters. Sequences of
nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region and the plastid trnL-F intronspacer (trnL-F) from the new
species and its 22 relatives are used to resolve generic placement of the new species in Primulina. In spite of three
species are vastly different in morphology, the molecular evidences showed that the closest relatives of P. guizhongensis
are P. mollifolia and P. luochengensis. The conservation threat analysis is summarized according to the IUCN Red List
Categories and Criteria.
Introduction
The genera Chirita Buch.-Ham. ex Don (1822: 83) and Chiritopsis Wang (1981: 21) were always considered
to be closely related (Li & Wang, 2007). Recently molecular studies (Weber et al. 2011, Wang et al. 2011) has
shown that the originally monotypic genus Primulina Hance (1883) belongs to this group, and that genus was
enlarged to include Chirita and Chiritopsis. Meanwhile new species in this group were reported, for example
P. sinovietnamica Wu & Zhang (2012: 13), which hinted to morphological characters of similar species not
being consistent with molecular evidence (Wu et al. 2012). Guangxi is the distribution and diversity centre of
Primulina in China and worldwide (Wei et al. 2010) and numerous new taxa have been recently discovered in
this genus (e.g. Huang et al. 2012, Wen et al. 2012, Wen et al. 2012, Wu et al. 2012).
One of the authors of this paper, Bo Pan, found a population of Primulina at Liujiang County,
Liuzhou, Guangxi, China in 2007. He collected some flowering specimens, and after carefully
consulting the relevant literature (e.g. Li & Wang 2004, Wei et al. 2010), the Flora of China (Wang
et al. 1990, Wang et al. 1998) and herbarium specimens, we concluded that it is a new species. The
new species is described and illustrated here and its conservation status is evaluated.
Material and methods
We collected leaf material of our possible new species, using silica gel to dry it in the field (Chase & Hills
1991) for DNA extraction. The nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region and the plastid
trnL-F intronspacer (trnL-F) were used as molecular markers. The molecular methods and protocols followed
Möller et al. (2009, 2011). Genbank accession numbers for ITS and trnL-F of our new species are JN644337
and JN644340, respectively (Table 1).
DNA sequences of the new species were found to be similar to the sequences of the recently
recircumscribed Primulina (Wang et al. 2011, Weber et al. 2011b) based on comparison with Blast N in NCBI
ZHAO ET AL.28 Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press
(http://blast.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/). To elucidate the phylogenetic affinities of the new species, ingroup (22
species of Primulina) and outgroup (Ornithoboea wildeana Craib, Paraboea rufescens (Franch.) B.L.Burtt)
selection were chosen based on recent phylogenetic analyses (Li et al. 2007, Möller et al. 2011, Weber et al.
2011), and from which sequences were available from GenBank (Table 1).
TABLE 1. Species names, voucher numbers and accession numbers of ITS and trnL-F sequences used in this study. ?
indicates the new species.
Species name
(according to Weber A. et al. 2011) Species name
(before) Vo uc h er
number trnL-F ITS
Primulina bipinnatifida (W.T. Wang) Y.Z.
Wang Chiritopsis bipinnatifida W.T. Wang DQ872806 DQ872842
Primulina cordifolia (D . Fa ng & W.T. Wang)
Y.Z . Wa ng Chiritopsis cordifolia D. Fang & W.T.
Wang DQ872803 DQ872845
Primulina dryas (Dunn) Mich. Möller & A.
Weber Chirita sinensis Lindl. FJ501524 FJ501348
Primulina gemella (D. Wood) Y.Z. Wang Chirita gemella D.Wood FJ501523 FJ501345
Primulina glandulosa (D. Fang, L. Zeng &
D.H. Qin) Y.Z. Wang Chiritopsis glandulosa D. Fang, L. Zeng
& D.H. Qin DQ872804 DQ872841
Primulina glandulosa var. yangshuoensis
(Fang Wen, Yue Wang & Q.X. Zhang) Mich.
Möller & A. Weber
Chiritopsis glandulosa D.Fang, L.Zeng &
D.H.Qin var. yangshuoensis Fang Wen,
Q.X.Zhang & Yue Wang HQ632948 HQ633045
Primulina guizhongensis ? WF071001 JN644340 JN644337
Primulina heterotricha (Merr.) Y.Z. Wang Chirita heterotricha Merr. DQ872816 DQ872826
Primulina linearifolia (W.T. Wang) Y.Z.
Wang Chirita linearifolia W.T. Wang DQ872810 DQ872834
Primulina longgangensis (W.T. Wang) Y.Z.
Wang Chirita longgangensis W.T.Wang AJ492290 FJ501347
Primulina luochengensis (Yan Liu & W.B.
Xu) Mich. Möller & A. Weber Wentsaiboea luochengensis Yan Li u &
W.B.Xu HQ632949 HQ633046
Primulina minutimaculata (D. Fang & W.T.
Wang) Y.Z. Wang Chirita minutimaculata D. Fang & W.T.
Wang DQ872815 DQ872828
Primulina mollifolia (D. Fang & W.T. Wang)
Y.Z . Wa ng Chiritopsis mollifolia D. Fang & W.T.
Wang DQ872802 DQ872847
Primulina ophiopogoides (D. Fang & W.T.
Wang) Y.Z. Wang Chirita ophiopogoides D. Fang & W.T.
Wang DQ872814 DQ872829
Primulina pinnata (W.T. Wang) Y.Z. Wang Chirita pinnata W.T.Wang FJ501526 FJ501349
Primulina pinnatifida (Hand.-Mazz.) Y.Z.
Wang Chirita pinnatifida (Hand.-Mazz.)
B.L.Burtt FJ501527 FJ501350
Primulina pteropoda (W.T. Wang) Y.Z. Wang Chirita pteropoda W.T. Wang DQ872817 DQ872827
Primulina repanda var. guilinensis (W.T.
Wang) Mich. Möller & A. Weber Chiritopsis repanda W.T.Wa ng var.
guilinensis W.T.Wan g AJ492292 FJ501351
Primulina spadiciformis (W.T. Wang) Mich.
Möller & A. Weber Chirita spadiciformis W.T.Wang AJ492291 FJ501346
Primulina spinulosa (D. Fang & W.T. Wang)
Y.Z . Wa ng Chirita spinulosa D. Fang & W.T. Wang DQ872813 DQ872830
Primulina tabacum Hance Primulina tabacum Hance AJ492300 FJ501352
Primulina weii Mich. Möller & A. Weber Chirita mollifolia D. Fang, Y.G. Wei & J.
Murata DQ872811 DQ872832
Primulina wentsaii (D. Fang & L. Zeng) Y.Z.
Wang Chirita wentsaii D. Fang & L. Zeng DQ872812 DQ872831
Paraboea rufescens (Franchet) B. L. Burtt DQ872825 DQ865196
Ornithoboea wildeana Craib DQ872824 DQ865197
Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press 29
PRIMULINA GUIZHONGENSIS (GESNERIACEAE), A NEW SPECIES
Nucleotide sequences were edited and aligned with the CLUSTAL W ver. 1.83 (Thompson et al. 1997)
and MEGA 4.0 (Tamura et al. 2007). The ITS and trnL-F sequences were analyzed together after assessing
their character congruence by the incongruence length difference (ILD; P = 0.14) test in PAUP* 4.0b10
(Swofford 2002). Phylogenetic analyses were performed using maximum parsimony (MP) method
implemented in PAUP* 4.0b10. Alignment gaps were treated as missing data. Heuristic searches were
performed using a starting tree built from stepwise addition with TBR branch swapping and1000 random
addition replicates. To assess confidence in clades, bootstrap analyses based on 1000 replicates with 10
random additions per replicate were used.
FIGURE 1. The strict consensus tree based on a maximum-parsimony (MP) analysis of combined ITS and trnL-F data. Numbers
above and below the branches indicate bootstrap values >50% by MP analysis. ? indicates the new species.
The MP tree was rooted on Ornithoboea wildeana and Paraboea rufescens. The samples of Primulina
formed a monophyletic clade with high bootstrap value (BS = 100%). The new species was strongly supported as
sister to a clade (BS = 80%) comprised of P. luochengensis (Yan Liu & W.B.Xu) Mich.Möller & A.Weber in
Möller et al. (2011: 783) and P. mollifolia (D.Fang & W.T.Wang) J.M.Li & Yin Z.Wang in Wang et al. (2011: 61).
ZHAO ET AL.30 Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press
Results
Molecular analysis
The combined matrix had a length of 1536 characters, 674 for ITS and 862 for trnL-F. Of the 441 (28.7%)
varied, 220 (14.3%) were parsimoniously informative, including the indels. The maximum parsimony
analysis on the combined matrix resulted in produced a single tree of 744 steps length, a consistency index
(CI) of 0.7607, retention index (RI) of 0.6904 and homoplasy index (HI) of 0.2392. The strict consensus tree
(Fig. 1) was highly resolved and tree topology was consistent with the previous phylogenetic study by Möller
et al. (2011).
FIGURE 2. Primulina guizhongensis. A, habitat; B, opened corolla for showing stamens and staminodes; C, calyx, pistil and stigma
(Drawn by Qi Wei based on holotype).
Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press 31
PRIMULINA GUIZHONGENSIS (GESNERIACEAE), A NEW SPECIES
FIGURE 3. The comparison of morphology between two relatives (A–F) Primulina guizhongensis (G–J) P. spadiciformis A, habitat;
B, plants; C, the frontal view of flower; D, the lateral view of flower; E, pistil and calyx; F, opened corolla; G, Habitat; H, plant in
flowering time; I, the frontal view of flower; J, the lateral view of flower.
ZHAO ET AL.32 Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press
Taxonomic treatment
Primulina guizhongensis Bo Zhao, B.Pan & F.Wen, sp. nov. (Figure 2 & Figure 3 A–F)
The new species differs from P. spadiciformis by having smaller green linear-lanceolate bracts (0.8–1.2 cm long), longer
pedicels (1.8–2.2 cm long), larger calyx lobes (11–15 × 1.5–1.8 mm), corollas outside with glandular pubescence,
inside glabrous.
TYPE:—CHINA. Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region: Liuzhou, Liujiang County, Futang Town, 24°20'24.81"N,
109°12'33.3036"E, 130 m, 10 October 2007, WF071001 (holotype IBK!, isotype BJFC!)
Perennial herbs, acaulescent. Rhizomes cylindrical, ca. 3.5 cm long or longer, 0.6–0.9 cm in diameter,
glabrous, internodes inconspicuous. Leaves basal, 20–32 or more; petioles cylindrical, pubescent, 3.5–8.5 cm
long; leaf blades slightly oblique, ovate to oblong-ovate, 5.5–10.5 × 2.1–4.5 cm, chartaceous when dry,
densely white appressed-pubescent on both sides, bases cuneate or narrowly cuneate, margins subentire,
repand or crenate, apices obtuse or rounded; lateral veins 3–4 on each side of midrib, conspicuous. Cymes
axillary, 4–12 or more, unbranched, commonly 2–4-flowered, rarely 1; peduncles purplish brown, slender,
5.5–10.5 cm, 0.18–0.25 cm in diameter, densely erect puberulent; bracts 2, opposite, linear-lanceolate, 0.8–1.2
× 0.1–0.15 cm, green, outside puberulent, margins entire, apices acute. Pedicels purplish-brown or greenish-
brown, 1.8–2.2 cm long, 1.5–2.0 mm in diameter, puberulent and sparsely assurgent, villose. Calyx lightly
purplish brown, 5-sect from base; segments equal, lanceolate, 11–15 × 1.5–1.8 mm, outside densely
pubescent, inside glabrous, margins entire, apices acute. Corolla bluish purple to lilac, campanulate, 4.0–4.8
cm long, outside glandular puberulent, inside glabrous; limb distinctly 2-lipped, adaxial lip 2-parted to the
middle, lobes slightly oblique broadly ovate, ovate to rounded, ca. 0.95–1.1 × 0.5–1.0 cm, 3-lobed to or over
the middle, lobes oblong, the apex of central one emarginate, 12.0–13.3 × 8–9 mm, rounded at apex. Stamens
2, adnate to ca 1.0 cm above the corolla base; anthers reniform, 3.2–3.5 × 0.8–1.1 mm, slightly constricted at
the middle, glabrous; filaments geniculate at the middle, ca. 13 mm long, glabrous; staminodes 3, lateral ones
short linear, glabrous, 4.0–4.5 mm long, adnate to 0.8–1.0 mm above the corolla base, the central one linear,
ca. 0.5 mm long, adnate to ca 4.2 mm above the corolla base; disc annular, margin entire, 0.4–0.5 mm high.
Pistil 4.2–4.5 cm long; the transition between ovary and style inconspicuous, densely glandular-puberulent
and puberulent. Stigma pale greene, obtrapeziform, apex 2-lobed to about one-third of the stigma, ca. 4.5 mm
long, lobes triangular. Capsules linear, 3.5–4.0 cm long.
Habitat and distribution:—Primulina guizhongensis was found growing on the slopes and cliffs of
some limestone hills and at the entrance of limestone caves, often at crevices in open evergreen forest near
Futang town, Liujiang County, Guangxi, China. The region has a seasonal monsoon climate. The distribution
of this new species and its relatives P. spadiciformis, P. mollifolia and P. luochengensis are shown in map 1.
Etymology:—GUI is the abbreviation for Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. The epithet refers to the
type locality of this new species being located in the center of Guangxi.
Diagnostic characters:—Primulina guizhongensis differs from its P. spadiciformis in having smaller
green linear-lanceolate bracts, longer pedicel (1.8–2.2 cm long), larger calyx lobes (11–15 × 1.5–1.8 mm), and
different corolla indumentum. A detailed comparison of the remarkable characters of two relatives is shown in
table 2.
Conservation status:—We carefully investigated the type locality on five visits during four years.
Primulina guizhongensis appears to be restricted to limestone hills surrounding Futang Town. Although this
species is common on local limestone hills, the habitats are too concentrated to those populations are easy to
be threatened by local people’s activities and this region is not a natural reserve. Using the IUCN Red List
categories and criteria version 3.1 (IUCN 2001), a provisional conservation status of Vulnerable VU D1 is
assessed for this species.
Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press 33
PRIMULINA GUIZHONGENSIS (GESNERIACEAE), A NEW SPECIES
MAP 1. Distribution of Primulina guizhongensis and related taxa. A, Known distribution of P. guizhongensis; B, Probable distribution
of P. spadiciformis; C, Known distribution of P. mollifolia; D, Known distribution of P. luochengensis
TABLE 2. Comparison between Primulina guizhongensis and its relative, P. spadiciformis.
Characters P. guizhongensis P. spadiciformis
Leaf numbers 20–32 or more ca. 12
Leaf blade shape slightly oblique, ovate to oblong-ovate slightly oblique, elliptic
Leaf blade base cuneate or narrowly cuneate obliquely cuneate, or one side cuneate and on the other
side rounded
Cymes 4–12 or more, 2–4-flowered, rarely 1 ca. 3, 2-flowered
Bracts linear-lanceolate, 0.8–1.2 cm long, green spathelike, narrowly boat-like-ovate, 1.5–2 cm long,
pale brownish-yellow
Pedicel length (cm) 1.8–2.2 0.1–1.6
Calyx lobes size 11–15 × 1.5–1.8 mm ca. 5 × 1–1.2 mm
Corolla
indumentum outside with glandular-pubescence and
pubescence, inside glabrous
outside with extremely sparse pubescence, inside
glandular-pubescence on the yellow spots, stamens
base with pubescence
Staminodes 3 2
Flowering time October August
ZHAO ET AL.34 Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press
FIGURE 4. The molecular relative, Primulina mollifolia and P. luochengensis, of P. guizhongensis, (A–C) P. mollifolia. A, habit; B,
cymes; C, cymes and flowers; (D–F) P. luochengensis. D, habit; E, cyme; F, flowers.
Discussion
Even though based on DNA evidence we confirmed that our new species is closely related to P.
mollifolia and P. luochengensis (Fig. 1), we not hesitate to describe this new species. The three
species look completely different and bear little resemblance to each other (Fig. 4). Recent
molecular studies showed that generic placement of species in Gesneriaceae largely differs from the
traditional generic classifications using morphological characters (Wang et al. 2011, Weber et al.
2011b, Wu 2012). Therefore it may be good to combine molecular evidence with morphological data
to resolve the taxonomy of Gesneriaceae.
Phytotaxa 109 (1) © 2013 Magnolia Press 35
PRIMULINA GUIZHONGENSIS (GESNERIACEAE), A NEW SPECIES
Acknowledgements
We are grateful to Mr. Qi Wei for his botanical drawings. This study was financially supported by funds from
the Guangxi Natural Science Foundation (2011GXNSFB018050), Science Research Foundation of Guangxi
Institute of Botany (Guikeneng11217028, Guizhiye11003 and Guizhiye11005), Science and Technology
Innovation Program of Guangxi Academy of Sciences and West Light Foundation of The Chinese Academy
of Sciences.
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... This new taxon looks similar to P. beiliuensis B. Pan & S.X. Huang which is endemic to Beiliu City, Guangxi and was formally described and published recently (Pan et al., 2013). But the habitat of P. beiliuensis is not located in limestone cave but only on the limestone cliffs under subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest. ...
... Except for P. beiliuensis, we compared with all described species of Primulina in local flora (Wang et al., 1990(Wang et al., , 1998, relevant monographs (Li & Wang, 2004;Wei et al., 2010) and some newest literature (e.g. Nguyen & Kiew, 2000;Wang et al., 2011;Weber et al., 2011;Xu et al., 2012;Cai et al., 2013;Jiang & Li, 2013;Zhao et al., 2013;Liang et al., 2014) , we confirmed it should be considered as a new variety of type variety, P. beiliuensis. It is described, illustrated and compared here. ...
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Primulina fengshanensis Fang Wen & Yue Wang, a new species of Gesneriaceae from Guangxi, is described and illustrated. The new species is compared with the similar P. linearifolia and P. longgangensis.
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— We studied sequence variation in 16S rDNA in 204 individuals from 37 populations of the land snail Candidula unifasciata (Poiret 1801) across the core species range in France, Switzerland, and Germany. Phylogeographic, nested clade, and coalescence analyses were used to elucidate the species evolutionary history. The study revealed the presence of two major evolutionary lineages that evolved in separate refuges in southeast France as result of previous fragmentation during the Pleistocene. Applying a recent extension of the nested clade analysis (Templeton 2001), we inferred that range expansions along river valleys in independent corridors to the north led eventually to a secondary contact zone of the major clades around the Geneva Basin. There is evidence supporting the idea that the formation of the secondary contact zone and the colonization of Germany might be postglacial events. The phylogeographic history inferred for C. unifasciata differs from general biogeographic patterns of postglacial colonization previously identified for other taxa, and it might represent a common model for species with restricted dispersal.
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Chirita D. Don, a large genus in the subfamily Cyrtandroideae of Gesneriaceae, has been the subject of much debate whether it is a natural group or not. In addition, the highly heterogeneous Chirita has also been very problematic with regard to delimitation and subdivision. Here we used the nrDNA internal transcribed spacer and cpDNA trnL-F for molecular phylogenetic analaysis, combined with morphological data. Our results suggest that Chirita is an artificial, polyphyletic genus. The most important character that defines Chirita, the dorso-ventrally oblique and bilamellar stigma, has evolved convergently in different clades of diandrous Cyrtandroideae. Chirita sensu strict only includes the species of Chirita sect. Chirita, whereas Chirita sect. Microchirita is an independent clade located at the basal node of the phylogenetic tree. Chirita sect. Liebigia is closely related to Didymocarpus with an entire stigma unlike other species of Chirita. The species of Chirita sect. Gibbosaccus, Chiritopsis, Primulina, and Wentsaiboea form a monophyletic group that is sister to a strongly supported clade comprising four monotypic genera Paralagarosolen, Calcareoboea, Petrocodon, and Tengia. We further analyzed the morphological evolution of Chirita and identified a series of morphological synapomorphies for the monophyletic groups revealed herein, and thereby provide a taxonomic treatment in this study.